The Hifi Podcast with Darren and Duncan episodes 46-50

The Hifi Podcast with Darren and Duncan episodes 46-50


Episode 46

It begins with a flip of a switch, and often on the first power-up of a new component. What’s supposed to be one of the most fun parts of the experience descends quickly into horror when the dreaded HUMM comes through the speakers.

Most of us have heard this horrible noise before, but it isn’t always clear what the cause is, exactly. In this episode, engineer Darren takes us down to the ground as we try to understand voltages, currents and potential differences on our ground lines.

Episode 47

Harmonizers. Resonators. Grounding boxes filled with dirt. Green dots, quantum tunneling, past-time-disentanglement, beeswax, tellerium,  C37 lacquer, nano liquid… the list goes on and on. What some folks in the hobby consider heretical snake oil, others have tried and found some degree of success in their audio journeys. But where is the line? Perhaps the “madness line” is different for each person, and since this is supposed to be a fun hobby, perhaps there is no line that needs to be drawn.

Regardless, in this episode of The Hifi Podcast, the guys discuss where their line lies on the scale of interesting or “out there” audio approaches.

Episode 48

This week’s episode is spurred from a listener question about how The Hifi Podcast hosts Duncan and Darren actually go about shooting out different pieces of gear in a reference system. Some say you should move quickly between A and B to avoid getting caught in biases and to stay within the “auditory memory window”; others suggest taking things slowly and letting subtle differences build up in your mind with time.

Well, you must be new to hifi audio if you don’t know that there are a ton of ways to do everything  while still reaching a similar result. The same goes for this, although the guys certainly do have their preferred methods. Listen in as they talk about checklists, memory, mental peace and more in this wide ranging discussion about listening.

Episode 49

When hifi speaker makers offer more than one “flavor” of speaker, it’s typically to satisfy both audiophiles who seek more resolution, and those who want a more “fun” speaker. This is a wise move, as neither camp is likely to be swayed by a middle-of-the-road compromise. One of the joys about the audiophile hobby is that you don’t have to compromise your desired path. What sounds good to you IS good for you. It’s because of this that we see so many approaches to the same objective in hifi audio.

This freedom and variety means that many people are chasing many different sounds. And when it comes to the topic of system resolution, this is an area where we see people differ more than others.

Episode 50

In this episode, the guys talk about harmonic distortion and the difference in sound between a steel beam hitting a concrete floor and a stack of bamboo hitting the same floor.

What does a cheaper Class D amplifier have in common with the steel beam? What is negative second order harmonic? And what’s so interesting about square waves for measuring amplifiers, when music is made of sines?

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